Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Saturday, December 26, 2009
Daisy loves the empty boxes!
We went to Tina and Ian's for turkey dinner. It was very tasty!! It was frosty fog out yesterday, and Lee snapped this picture of our weeping birch tree.
As much as I hate and despise every aspect of the winter season, I must say that when the trees get frosty like that, it is a beautiful sight. Today, it is sunny so I took a couple extra pictures of the same tree.
Very pretty out there today.
Sunday, December 20, 2009
Drop into the cereal and cover. I use a spoon cause it's faster. And when you are doing this alone, faster is better.
Look what they do when I am not looking!!
I have given up on fixing it. That is simply a waste of my time.
I hope your tree is fairing better than mine!
Sunday, October 11, 2009
What was I doing you ask? I was occupational health and safety supervisor. And Master Documenter of Events.
This is Riley, Tina and Ian's chocolate lab. I captured this rare moment of him not barking.
Yesterday, before we headed out to help with the hay, I was making Pumpkin Date Squares. I got it all put together and baked them up at Tina's for dessert last night. It is quite a tasty fall recipe and they aren't overly sweet. They can be served warm or cold, and with or without a dollop of whipped cream.
Pumpkin Date Squares
- 1 cup chopped dates
- 1 cup pumpkin puree (not pie filling)
- 1 cup water
- 3/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1 1/2 cups rolled oats (not instant)
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 3/4 cup butter, melted
In a saucepan, bring filling ingredients to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.
In a large bowl, mix crumble ingredients except for the butter. Mix until combined and with a fork, incorporate the melted butter until crumbly.
Pat half of the crumble mix into a lightly greased 8x8 pan. Spread filling over top and sprinkle with remaining crumble mix.
Bake in the center of 350 degree oven for 30 minutes or until golden. Cool in pan on rack.
Monday, October 5, 2009
So in honor of the birth of little precious, I am having a celebratory drink. (Roll with me here) Actually, I made a new slush recipe on Saturday night and didn't have any Sprite till today. It is darn good slush! Don't have a pic of that either as it is dark and pics with flash look horrid. I got the recipe from jenng on Tasty Kitchen.
- 1 cup sugar
- 9 cups water
- 2 bags raspberry tea
- 1 can frozen orange juice
- 1 can frozen pink lemonade
- 1 can frozen limeade
- 1 26oz (750mL) black cherry vodka
In a large pot, combine 7 cups of water and sugar. Boil for approximately 1 minute and set aside.
In a tea kettle, boil remaining 2 cups of water and pour over tea bags. Steep for 20 minutes. Remove tea bags and pour into the pot.
Stir in all of the concentrates till combined. Pour in vodka and allow mixture to come to room temperature.
Pour into a large container and put it in the freezer. It won’t freeze completely due to the alcohol, but it should become slushy—thus becoming SLUSH.
Scoop into glasses till 1/2 to 3/4 full (depending on your taste) and top with soda.
Kick back, close your eyes, drink and enjoy !!!
I mixed mine in two 4L ice cream containers as it wouldn't all fit in one. Enjoy! I am!
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
Corn Cob Jelly (posted by kristenofchaos on Tasty Kitchen)
- 4 cups water
- 1 box pectin crystals (I used Certo)
- 4 cups sugar
- 12 cobs of corn, raw and corn removed
Using 12 corn cobs from which sweet corn has been cut (raw) add 4 cups of water to a large pot.
Bring to a boil. Boil 10 minutes then strain through a cloth for 3 cups of liquid. (I used cheesecloth. You can buy jelly bags.)
Add more water if needed to make the total. (I had to add water, so I think next time, I would add more from the get go)
In a fruit pan, add 1 box of pectin and bring to a rolling boil.Add 4 cups of sugar (all at once) and bring to a boil once again. (I removed the cobs from the pot and added it back and used the same pot. I skimmed the foam off too.)
Food coloring may be added at this time. (I added 3-4 drops of yellow colouring)
Strain and put into jars and seal. (I didn't strain it a second time.)
Quite tasty. Doesn't taste like corn. Has a light, delicate honey like flavor.
Monday, September 7, 2009
- 4 lbs pickling cucumbers, sliced
- 8 small onions, sliced (I used 3 medium onions, got them fresh from the Mennonites)
- 1/2 cup pickling salt
- 5 cups sugar
- 4 cups vinegar
- 2 tbs mustard seed
- 2 tsp celery seed
- 1 1/2 tsp ground tumeric
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
In a large container, combine the cucumbers, onions and salt. Cover with crushed ice and mix well. Let stand for 3 hours. drain; rinse and drain again. (My ice maker only makes ice cubes, and I couldn't be bothered to run it in the blender. Worked OK I think)
In a Dutch oven, combine the sugar, vinegar and seasonings; bring to a boil. Add cucumber mixture; return to a boil. Remove from the heat.
Carefully ladle hot mixture into hot pint jars, leaving 1/2-in. headspace. Remove air bubbles, wipe rims and adjust lids. Process for 15 minutes in a boiling-water canner.
Word to the wise, wear old clothes, use an old ladle. This stuff will stain.
Yield: 7 pints.
Monday, August 31, 2009
My first venture into the canning world (other than freezer jam) were these.
I can't try them till September 22nd, but they sure look good. The beans, like the dill pickles are fresh packed. Pack the jars with fresh veggies and seasonings, pour pickling liquid over top, seal and process. Simple. Other recipes may require brining, fermenting, or a complete cooking of the veggies.
I got the recipe from Tasty Kitchen which was posted by missy. I made two pints with the crushed chilis and two without. Not every one likes spicy like we do.
Dill Beans (missy's recipe from Tasty Kitchen)
- 2 pounds green beans, washed and trimmed
- 2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 4 pieces dried Thai chili (I didn't use because I forgot to stop at the asian grocery)
- 4 cloves of garlic, peeled
- 4 sprigs fresh dill
- 2 cups water
- 1 pint white vinegar
- 1/4 cup pickling salt
Into 4 sterile pint jars, put 1/2 t red pepper flakes, 1 Thai chili, 1 clove garlic, 1 sprig of dill. Pack beans tightly into pint jars.
In saucepan, bring water, vinegar and salt to a boil. Pour into jars covering beans and leaving 1/4 inch head space. Seal immediately with sterile lids and process for 10 minutes in a boiling bath. Adjust process time to your altitude if needed. Ready to eat in one month.
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Speedy Dill Pickles adapted from Canning and Preserving for Dummies
- 4 pounds pickling cucumbers
- 6 tbs kosher or pickling salt
- 3 cups picking vinegar
- 3 cups water
- 1 tbs pickling spices
- 18 black peppercorns
- 3 tbs dill seed
- fresh dill sprigs (optional)
Wash cucumbers. Slice in halves or quarters.
Prepare canning jars and lids. I put my clean jars in the sink and fill with boiling water until ready to use. I put the lids (not the rings) in a small saucepan till ready to use. When I am almost ready for the lids, I pour boiling water over them.
Combine salt, water, and vinegar in a saucepan. Bring the liquid to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally to dissolve the salt. Keep liquid hot.
Snuggly pack the cucumbers in the prepared jars. I use my silicone oven mitt I bought forever ago and never used for this. I dumped the boiling water out of my jars and stuffed them, holding the jar with my silicone oven mitted hand. Glad I kept that, cause Lee wanted to get rid of it.
If using quart (1L) jars, to each jar, add 1 tsp pickling spice, 6 peppercorns, 1 tbs of dill seed. Optional: 2 peeled, halved cloves of garlic
If using pint (500mL) jars, to each jar, add 1/2 tsp pickling spice, 3 peppercorns, 1 1/2 tsp dill seed. Optional: 1 peeled, halved clove of garlic
If you are adding fresh dill, add a sprig or two to each jar between the inside edge of the jar and the cucumbers.
Ladle the hot liquid into your filled jars, leaving a headspace of 1/2 inch in quart jars and 1/4 inch in pint jars. Completely submerge cucumbers in the liquid. If they protrude, adjust till you have proper headspace. Release any air bubbles. That wide mouth funnel was a godsend. The headspace tool was great too because my 1/4 inch and a real 1/4 inch are two different things.
Wipe the jar rims clean. Seal with the lid and add the band till finger tight. Finger tight isn't very tight. Just when you start to meet resistance, stop. Magnet tool, which is basically a magnet on a stick is another great tool. Makes sealing go so much faster.
Process your sealed jars in a water bath. Jars should be covered in 2-3 inches of water. 15 minutes for quart jars, 10 minutes for pint jars. Start the timer when the pot comes to a rolling boil after adding the jars. Adjust your process time based on altitude. I have to add an additional 5 minutes to my time. You can find this by googling it.
When the process time is up, remove the jars and place them on a clean towel or cooling rack. Thank you jar lifter! Lids will seal (pop) as they cool. If any don't seal, refrigerate and use within 2 months.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
I make my own sweet sauce too. Most recipes I have seen call for evaporated milk. I find this is too runny, regardless of how long I beat it for. I use a sweetened condensed milk in mine. Thank goodness for the stand mixer because it has to be mixed for quite some time.
When the loaf is cooked, I slice into thin slices. I run my pita bread quickly under the tap to moisten, and put in hot frying pan. Brown on both sides and top with some sweet sauce. Add the meat and drizzle more sweet sauce. Top with veggies if you like and enjoy.
Still can't get the large pita in small town Alberta, so I just eat mine flat like a pizza.
- 1lb ground beef
- 1 tsp flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1/4 tsp cayenne (or to taste)
Mix thoroughly in large mixing bowl. I knead mine for at least 5 minutes. Form into a flattened loaf and place on cooling rack onto a foil lined baking sheet. This will allow the grease to run off. Bake for 45 minutes on 350 degrees or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. It should be cooked through.
For leftover meat, I fry them in the frying pan. I like the meat crispy.
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 can sugar
- 1/2 can vinegar
- 1 tsp garlic powder
Empty can of milk into a mixing or stand mixer bowl. Fill milk can with sugar and add to bowl. Fill milk can half full of vinegar and add to bowl. Add garlic powder. Mix for at least 10 minutes. If it is not mixed enough, sauce will be gritty from the sugar. Must be refrigerated at least overnight before serving. It will thicken after refrigerating.
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Vicki's scallops are the only deep fried scallops I have ever liked. Most places have oddly thick batter, so pan fried is my favorite way to go. Vicki uses a light coating and they are most delicious.
Jess' three piece fish. As most places in Nova Scotia, Vicki uses haddock for her fish and chips. Nice light batter, crazy fresh, superbly flaky.
My half eaten clams and chips. I love love love fried clams. Can't get them just anywhere. These just melt in your mouth. No rocks in these clams. I am making myself hungry here.
So the moral of the story, if you ever get to Nova Scotia, get yourself to Vicki's. You won't be disappointed!
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
For when I am far away on the briny ocean tossed,
Will you ever heave a sigh or a wish for me?"
The Annapolis Valley and the Bay of Fundy from 20,000 feet.
Sunday, August 9, 2009
Thursday, August 6, 2009
This the the Halifax Harbour from the MacKay Bridge.
This is Lower Water Street down by the waterfront.
Buskers Festival starts today so there were some set up yesterday. I love bagpipes, and paired with the drummers, it was awesome.
This is the Alexander Keith's Brewery. Alexander Keith is buried in a downtown cemetery and his grave site is often littered with Keith's beer cans and bottles from those who are there to share a beer with the man himself.
This is Georges Island which sits in the mouth of the harbour. That is the yacht I was planning to buy when I won the 6/49 last night. But I didn't win.
These are Beaver Tails. They are a slab of fried dough and are available in a variety of toppings. Jess had Skor and I had Chocolate Hazelnut. They are yummy!
Nova Scotia Crystal is on the waterfront also. It is the only mouth blown crystal being made in Canada. Stop by at the right time and you can watch them work.
We went to Bubbles Mansion for dinner and a drink. We first went to Bubbles in 2007 when we were in Nova Scotia for our wedding. We enjoyed it so much, I made a point of going back on this visit.
The menu is vastly different from our last visit. And not for the better, I am sad to say. But if you are a TPB fan, do stop by. They have the shed there!
Jess and her drink. I think it was called the Hydroponic.